Ukulele vs Guitar: Main Differences and Which Is Easier to Play

Learning a new instrument is not only a monetary investment, but it also requires you to commit precious time and efforts. Which is why it’s always a matter of great deliberation between new instrument enthusiasts about which one they should pick up. The learning curve is one of the primary deciding factors.

So when you are stuck between the ukulele and guitar, how do you know which to choose? A detailed evaluation, of course.

Knowing more about the two instruments will make your final choice so much easier, plus you can be sure you are making a wise decision. 

In this piece, we will be telling you exactly what sort of differences you can expect to see between a ukulele and a guitar based on sound, price, style, and obviously, the learning difficulty scale.

Ready to find out which instrument is the one for you?

Brief Summary: Ukulele vs Guitar

Let’s get the most obvious difference out of the way. Ukuleles are smaller than guitars. Also, the standard ukulele has four strings, while the guitar has six. The fretboard of a guitar is significantly wider than a ukulele, as well as being much longer. This makes the ukulele much easier for practitioners will smaller hands. People with small hands must learn how to stretch their fingers a little while playing the guitar. With that being said, people with larger hands will find the guitar to be much more comfortable.

Both the acoustic and electric models of a guitar have a style that’s unique to them. There’s no way to say for sure that one is better than the other for beginners. A ukulele’s style is based around the classic Hawaiian feel, as this is the origin place of the instrument. 

Sound Difference Between the Ukulele and the Guitar

When do go for the guitar? When you want a bright, acoustic tone, or a powerful rock concert in the basement. Choose between an electric or acoustic guitar and both will provide beautiful, unique sounds.

When it comes to tone and range, the guitar is much more versatile. It can reach tones much lower than what a ukulele can as the fretboard is much longer. 

However, the sound produced by a ukulele might not be the most versatile, but its incredibly unique. The traditional Hawaiian tone becomes the perfect backdrop for a chill day at the beach. Depending on the size of ukulele you purchase, the tones will vary, so make sure to do your share of the research in that department.

And despite the smaller range, you can still play various kinds of music on a ukulele. Would you be shocked if we said we say people playing heavy metal songs on a little uke? Would we recommend it? Not really, but props for trying.

If you plan on singing along with the instrument, do consider which instrument suits your vocal range the most. For instance, a higher range would be much more comfortable alongside a ukulele.

The Price of Ukuleles vs Guitars

If you’re looking for a budget option, a ukulele is the definitive answer there. New ukuleles are much cheaper than new guitars.

A low-quality uke will be anywhere around $20 while a decent quality ukulele won’t be more than $50 to $80.

On the other hand, a brand new, quality guitar will set you back at least $150 to $200.

Buying secondhand guitars is easier than buying secondhand ukuleles. However, even the old guitars will cost more than a new ukulele.

Which is Easier to Learn: Ukulele or Guitar?

The moment of truth has arrived.

As a beginner, will the ukulele or guitar be easier for you to learn?

Now, this discussion is highly debatable. While many people will say that learning the uke is easier without any deep deliberation, that isn’t always the case.

The learning curve related to a ukulele is definitely easier than a guitar’s. With a uke, you can start playing songs and making songs after a few days of practice. As this seems lucrative to many, they instinctively pick up the ukulele.

The tension on ukulele strings is lower, and given how there are fewer strings to handle, it’s easier for beginners. If you are an absolute beginner and have never had any experience with a stringed instrument (or any instrument for that matter), we recommend a ukulele.

Coming to the guitar, there are some reasons the bigger distant relative of the ukulele may be easier for you to learn. As mentioned before, the frets of a ukulele are rather smaller. So, if you have large hands, you will find it inconvenient to a degree. Plus, there is a wider range of options with guitar lessons.

It’s very easy finding amazing guitar instructors both online and offline as it’s one of the most commonly played instruments. Practicing and taking lessons is the best and sure-shot way to improve your skills.

And if you’re sure you want a ukulele, don’t fret. While it’s true that this instrument is less common, you will surely find great resources and lessons online to set you off on the right track on your uke journey.

Ukulele vs Guitar: Which is for You?

We can’t for sure say, which instrument is better than the other. Neither can we tell you which one you should get. The choice greatly depends on personal preference, taste in music, and the place you wish to play it.

The ultimate tip which you may find helpful if you want to take your playing to the next level is to follow up on your lessons, regardless of which instrument you choose. This is the best way to get a head start, as well as keep your spirits up.

Bottom Line

As you can see, there’s no “correct” answer to the question, “Is ukulele easier to learn that guitar?” However, people form opinions as they use these instruments, and we are hoping you will find the right one for yourself.

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